M.G. Design closing in Pleasant Prairie eliminates 46 jobs locally

Shutdown prompts federal lawsuit

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Pleasant Prairie-based M.G. Design Associates Corp. is shutting down operations at all of its facilities, citing an inability to secure financing, according to a notice filed with the state.

The closure of the trade show exhibit builder will result in the elimination of 46 jobs locally and has already prompted a federal lawsuit over the notification of employees about the decision.

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In a May 11 letter, M.G. Design notified state officials it would cease operations at all of its locations, with layoffs beginning May 9. The letter from chief executive officer Michael Grivas says it was based on the best information available to the company as of Friday.

“The notice was not given 60 days prior to the effective date of certain layoffs and the anticipated closings date because the company was unable to secure additional capital,” Grivas wrote. “Had the company secured additional funds in time, the operations most likely would not have shut down and would have continued.”

Company officials did not respond to a request for comment.

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Nine of the positions being eliminated are represented by the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America Local 1027. The remaining 37 are non-union positions.

The abrupt closure has already prompted a potential class action lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for Eastern Wisconsin by Denise Mosey, a now former senior account manager at the company’s Pleasant Prairie facility at 8778 100th St.

The complaint says M.G. Design has approximately 150 similarly situated employees. The company has operations Las Vegas, San Francisco and Orlando in addition to the Pleasant Prairie facility.

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Mosey alleges the abrupt closure violated the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act or WARN Act, which requires companies to provide 60 days of notice to employees ahead of mass layoffs or facility closings.

The lawsuit seeks certification as a class action and to require the company to pay the employees 60 days of wages, salary, commissions, bonuses and other benefits.

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